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Amazon's Part Finder feature helps you identify and purchase fasteners from your smartphone

July 26, 2018

You're working diligently on your latest DIY project only to discover that you don't have enough screws, nails, or other necessary parts to finish your piece.

It's a tale as old as time. You're working diligently on your latest DIY project only to discover that you don't have enough screws, nails, or other necessary parts to finish your piece. After a few heavy sighs, you stop what you're doing, drive to your local hardware store, and compare your fastener to a seemingly endless wall of parts in every size and shape imaginable. With the introduction of Amazon's Part Finder, however, this common inconvenience may soon be a thing of the past.

According to Sarah Perez for TechCrunch: "The feature is currently capable of identifying over 100 types of fasteners which represents thousands, if not millions of parts, Amazon says. It was built using technology developed by Partpic, a company Amazon acquired in 2016.

The feature takes advantage of the iPhone’s camera to identify the object in question – a process it walks you through when you first launch 'Part Finder' by tapping the Camera button next to the search box in the Amazon app."

According to Mark Wilson for Fast Company: "Part Finder’s superpower is the sheer specificity with which it can do the job. It can tell a SplitRivet from a WingNut and a flat head from a pan head. It can identify over 100 types of fasteners in all, 'which represents thousands, if not millions of parts,' according to Amazon. But crucially, Part Finder lists its own conclusions as tappable buttons. That means if Amazon gets something wrong–for instance, suggesting a Phillips head on your screw when you know you need something else–you can just tap that option to keep on shopping."

To learn more, read "Amazon launches Part Finder, built by technology it acquired from Partpic in 2016" from TechCrunch and "Amazon’s new feature is a DIYer’s dream" from Fast Company. 

About the Author

Alexis Gajewski | Senior Content Strategist

Alexis Gajewski has over 15 years of experience in the maintenance, reliability, operations, and manufacturing space. She joined Plant Services in 2008 and works to bring readers the news, insight, and information they need to make the right decisions for their plants. Alexis also authors “The Lighter Side of Manufacturing,” a blog that highlights the fun and innovative advances in the industrial sector. 

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